We had child safeguarding training at work the other day. There was all the usual cautionary tales and signs to look for.
But one the thing that behoved me was to find out there are now dating apps for teenagers.
That’s right! Dating apps for thirteen to nineteen year olds. Here’s the link to one:
Don’t click on it you pervert!
Anyhoo, I feel dating apps for teenagers should be bundled amongst things that are definitely a bad idea. Dare I say such applications are worse and more dangerous than pornography.
At least with pornography is known to contain explicit material, so when you click on it and see explicit material, you are unsurprised.
Or for example, drugs. Drugs are dangerous to teenagers also. But they are illegal and, although used by teenagers, adults will frown upon drug use.
Yet here is something being marketed straight to a teenage market, when parents are fighting tooth and nail to prevent their children creating Tinder accounts, Snapchatting their private parts or Facebooking their home address. We as adults are trying to teach the youth of today to be careful online and not fall into honey traps. Then along comes a group (presumably adults also) deciding to entice children into socialising with faceless strangers on a dating app.
Plus despite the website’s own terms and conditions stating an age cap (USERS THAT ARE OVER THE AGE OF 19 YEARS ARE FORBIDDEN TO SIGNUP FOR MYLOL. Registering with fake ages will result in a permanent ban from the site.), what’s to stop people creating fake accounts?
I’m not being some old fuddy-duddy prude who doesn’t want kids going out on dates. Date away. But surely it is best to date people you know. As many of us adults know, you meet enough weirdos and creeps doing online dating when you’re an adult. Imagine how many creeps and weirdos you’d meet as a teenager with less of a filter.
Hell, when I become a parent I’m going to get a cell phone jammer for my house. There’ll be no social media on my watch. Even the most innocent session of Minecraft can turn into a gaming session of lust and desire.
In short I am shocked that adults are endorsing the very things so many other adults are fighting to keep on top of. In real life we wouldn’t accept speed-dating for toddlers, or a cocktail bar for teens, or a dating consultant for under 18s. But in the under-policed cyber version of our universe there it is.
Join me next week, when I create my own ‘mylol’ profile to prove you can be over 19 and count as a teenager in Cyberspace. Oh no, these guys have already beaten me to it…